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Eat for Health

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Eat for Health

Published 1954

Ralph learns the five food groups, helping him to eat a balanced diet, and has more fun because of his better health.

Run time 10:23
Producer Encyclopaedia Britannica Films
Sponsor N/A
Audio/Visual Sd, B&W


Using the five fingers of each hand as a check off device, the film identifies a food group with each finger. Using this system, Ralph learns to eat a balanced diet and has more fun because of his better health.

Ken Smith sez: This film teaches youngsters that "eating with others is fun," though only if they follow a sensible diet. "Ralph" has such bad dietary habits that he has no pep, but once he learns that he should eat an egg a day and that "meat is good for you," everything is fine. Unfortunately, there's not enough faulty information in this film to make it worthwhile. The pandering narrator can also be heard in Appreciating Our Parents.

Danger Lurks Safety


Reviewer: makelikeabandit - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - April 14, 2016
Subject: Meat is GOOD for you!
Enjoyed watching this, it recalls a time when convenience and fast foods weren't yet a staple, and before the post-modern obsession over cholesterol and saturated fat. Neither vegans nor low-carb/paleo fans will care much for this one.
Reviewer: Victor Von Psychotron - favoritefavoritefavorite - November 18, 2012
Subject: Margarine!
Make sure to eat your margarine. I'm sure Apollo Ono and other world-class ice skaters chomp sticks of it every day.
Reviewer: JayKay49 - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - January 8, 2012
Subject: Be Careful What You Push On A Kid
The best part of this film is that it reminds me of how I used to "suck up" a second dinner at the neighbor kids house - most days! At our house "Peg Bundy" put on a pot of something (anything she could throw together in one pot) and we were fed it as soon as we got home from school because dad worked afternoons and she wanted to clean up that kitchen ASAP so she could go out to her friends to chew the rag then come back home in time to watch her westerns. So each day, after "dinner" I hippity hopped down the street and made sure that I showed up at the neighbors house just as dad was coming home from work, dishes and silverware were clinking and clanking ....and I knew dinner was immminent. Anyway, I managed a standing invitation to dinner (they had one kid and wished they had 5 so another kid at the table was ....I guess, a fantasy to these nice parents)....anyway, full three course dinners like pork chops, roast chicken, steaks! And a dessert, too! Never a problem getting me to look enthusiastic! Heck I was hungry! For a meal like that drying dishes was nothing!

But there is a sinister edge to this film....and many others like it:

I got razzed at the neighbors cottage after a fishing trip because I didnt like fish. It had this odd metallic taste that I really hated. Just wouldnt eat it thanks! (Even though in our Catholic household before Vatican II thats what was on the dinner table on Fridays).

So, just to be an agreeable kid I took a couple bites of perch - no...bluegill, and pretended I really liked it. I reviewed that scenario in my head as the ambulance was rushing me to the ER and they were intubating me as I gasped for every breath through lips as big as Flip Wilson's and a tongue so swollen I felt like a Holstein.

Heck...they didnt know. I didnt know. And I really never knew until 15 years later when somebody at the college cafeteria put out "Chicken Salad Sandwiches" that were actually mislabeled tuna salad sandwiches....another damned trip to the ER. That time I arrived fully cyanotic and was lucky I survived.

Fish shellfish shrimp and other water/muck dwellers can be severely allergenic and few people realize that there are more people allergic to sea food than there are allergic to peanuts. But it all depends on which industry pays the most homage to the media. So never, ever push food on a kid. If he dont like it ....there may be a good reason for it!

Incidently, the little girl guzzling milk like it was going out of style continued to do so while the dairy industry learned that gobs and gobs of estrogens, estrogen analogues, growth hormone, and all kinds of designer hormones some with prolactin like qualities - you name it...were labled , outlawed, relabled as something else...but nonetheless continued to be fed to the dairy cows...more and more.....wo you could get more and more milk from each cow, every day! And so, the poor milk guzzlin' girl got a nasty breast cancer and died at 42. Her older brother who also bought into the milk thing had a radical prostatectomy at 62 and is now impotent and basically playing a waiting game (nowadays termed "battling cancer" [how cutesy]) the prospect that that prostate cancer will rear its ugly head somewhere...probably in his skeleton. But so what ..Mom did what she was supposed to do...push gallons of milk on the kids and let em grow up thinking they just HAD to have that quart a day...while the ADA kept its lobbyists in Washington...all to make sure that dairying is a lucrative business thanks to the wonders of biochemistry!

BTW Getting kids to eat asparagus is useless. To a kid, anything that tastes like boogers is not going to go over. I dont care how much you "sugar coat" it.

Great film that totally reminds me of the good old days. The little boy that wont eat anything except candy bars looks strangely just like I did in those days.
Reviewer: it will work - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - October 21, 2010
Subject: Nice Contribution
Nice film that teaches and motivates children to eat properly . . .One of my favorite resources when it comes to nutrition and fat loss is Isabel De Los Rios. I consider Isabel to be one of the most knowledgeable nutrition experts I’ve come across over the years and I was extremely impressed with her information and her program, “The Diet Solution”.
Reviewer: Nikonwilly - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - March 7, 2010
Subject: Gotta have that...
Margarine!! Make sure your white bread is fortified !! let's promote all the additives and preservative we can in the beginning. Is it any wonder , being brought up with this propaganda we have all the health issues we now have? The USDA and or FDA has worked hand in hand with giant Food Corporations right from the start to promote their idea of healthy food products. True , there is some honest information here , but that only confuses the issue more so. The pay off for desirable results have been going on since the beginning and have never let up. All of these old propaganda films are a treasure to have , it really does give one the understanding of just how corrupt the Corporation and Federal Government, hand in hand , has been over a long period of time. Gullible , we must have been or very trusting for falling for the "expert" who worked for the Corporation selling us their product.
Reviewer: The_Emperor_Of_Television - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - January 30, 2010
Subject: Wait....What?
Ken Smith sez "Unfortunately, there's not enough faulty information in this film to make it worthwhile."

Wait, you *want* these films to be faulty? Sorry, Ken, but I disagree.

Now, somebody will probably criticise me for criticizing Ken, but I don't care.

The film itself is mediocre, so better or worse than the average film of this type made during pretty much any decade after the invention of sound-on-film. The acting, though, is more awful than usual, sometimes to the point of hilarity.

That said, the film does have some good footage of home decor, fashion, etc, which ends up making this a 5-star video. But then, I'm far too easy to please. I gave "Errand of Mercy" 5/5, need I say more?
Reviewer: Sara_no_h - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - December 3, 2008
Subject: this reminds me
My fiance was like Ralph before he met me. Slowly but surely I have turned my meat and potato eater onto fruits and veggies!
Reviewer: KayLhota - favoritefavorite - October 22, 2008
Subject: I Remember seeing Educational Film this in School!
Evidently, "Eat for Health" was still being circulated in Elementary Schools into the early 1960's, because as a little girl, I clearly remember that I saw it. It must have made a huge impression on me, although I always was a pretty good balanced food eater. Maybe that's one of the reasons: I couldn't imagine a kid not liking to eat peas!
--Kay Lhota
Reviewer: unzar - favoritefavoritefavorite - December 10, 2006
Subject: Sounds like what I eat!
After listening to the narrator list each food group I came to the astonishing conclusion that all of these desirable foods are on my Burger King Double Whopper with Cheese! Yea!!!!!
The End.
Added Info: A tomato is a fruit.
Reviewer: ERD - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - January 8, 2006
Subject: Nicely done
Nice film that teaches and motivates children to eat properly. (In reality,it does seem, however, that Ralph's mother was also at fault in not supervising her son's eating habits) Since children of that generation grew up seeing black and white films and TV, I don't think the food looked as bad to them as today's viewers who are used to color.
Reviewer: Christine Hennig - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - January 7, 2006
Subject: The Flying Five Fickle Fingers of Food
This charming grade-school film from the 50s teaches children to eat from five food groups by counting on their fingers. Ralph just doesnÃÂÃÂt have much pep until he stops eating candy bars and starts counting out the food groups heÃÂÃÂs eating from on his fingers. This probably went over with its intended audience about as well as Posture Pals. Nevertheless, itÃÂÃÂs fun to watch them try. ItÃÂÃÂs also fun to see the silly visual aids and the terrible-looking food, especially the vegetables.
Ratings: Camp/Humor Value: ****. Weirdness: ****. Historical Interest: ****. Overall Rating: ****.
Reviewer: Spuzz - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - April 29, 2003
Subject: Poor Ralph!
Ralph doesnt have any pep to go skating with his friends.. Why? He's not eating from all the 5 food groups! Had he known that, he would have discovered that 'eating is fun' and 'you can get more friends'. A highly bizarre showcase of food eating is shown, with children eating, yes, ONLY from one of the food groups. One child deliriously gulps down milk, another chows down on brocolli etc. Since this is in black and white, uhh, the colors don't exactly shine throught making the foods seem LESS appetizing. A VERY curious film, it's highly reccomended!
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